Sunday, March 5, 2017

2017 Menu: Sion @ Ara Damansara

Sion's chef-founder Masamichi Shiomi continues to churn out hit after hit, melding Japanese & European culinary sensibilities at one of the Klang Valley's most fulfilling restaurants for fusion fare. If you haven't ventured to Sion so far, you're missing out on one of Ara Damansara's best-kept secrets, tucked unobtrusively on the first floor of a commercial row.

The restaurant's strength rests in curating impeccable produce & cooking with imagination & intelligence, ensuring that customers enjoy memorable, mouthwatering medleys of flavours & textures. Bite into the 'sugar fruit' tomato from Japan's Kochi prefecture (RM23), vividly juicy with a natural sweetness, & it becomes clear that you're in for a marvellous meal. Molluscs are served hot in heartwarming sauces, paired with thick & crusty bread for a Spanish tapas-style experience - Japanese 'tsubugai' whelk, firm with a smooth chew, emerges garlicky in a nod to the al ajillo preparation (RM68), while oysters, fresh & fleshy, come enhanced with the ripened saltiness of black olives (RM22 for three pieces, RM38 for six).

Friends of foie, Sion deserves to be your next destination: The restaurant relies purely on French goose livers, best sauteed, with two fat slices that prove compellingly silken & rich (RM76) - the most satisfying foie we've had in Malaysia in recent years, certain to linger in our recollection. If you can't get enough, order the pan-fried foie with al dente mushroom risotto too (RM58).

Meat devotees will find plenty to desire as well: The Australian rib-eye steak, irreproachably medium-rare, spotlights the kitchen's mastery of technique & balance of ingredients (RM68), while the Iberico 'tontoro' neck cut promises pure porcine pleasure (RM62), both executed with a confident simplicity to let the protein shine, matched with suitable accompaniments.

 Speaking of pork, the cutlet sandwich is exceptional, featuring strips of the most tender sukiyaki-inspired flesh shaped into patties, packed into fluffy-crisp bread - this is a favourite among Sion's regulars, & we can comprehend why; it's compulsively addictive in its sheer tastiness (RM42). Also crowd-pleasing, the tonkatsu kare succeeds as soul food, especially if you're a fan of crisply breaded pork & creamy, savoury Japanese curries - pretty much a can't-fail combo (RM38).

 Italian inspirations ignite our final recommendations - chicken gizzard in a lively sauce that might taste like springtime in Tuscany (RM25) & mentaiko spaghetti at its finest (RM33) - while the French take centre stage for desserts of chocolate gateau (RM18) & creme brulee (RM15) that furnish the final, irrefutable evidence of Sion's remarkably versatile capabilities. 

Sion's chef is a sommelier too, & his establishment is stocked with intriguing vintages, including some with relatively limited availability. Sion's manager Seal will be pleased to recommend a bottle to partner with your meal; his selection of a Morande Edicion Limitada from Chile's Maule & Maipo Valleys, proved perfect for ours, conveying smooth tannins & a vibrant fruitiness. Many thanks to Sion for having us back.

Sion Dining & Bar
B-1-16, 1st Floor, Block B, Jalan PJU 1A/20A, Dataran Ara Damansara, Petaling Jaya.
Mon-Sat, 630pm-1130pm. Tel: 03-7840-0632

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  1. Wow! That tonkatsu kare and cutlet sandwich! Now I got to find out where is this SION lol.

    1. Rebecca: that cutlet sandwich is really good! i was surprised, considering i don't usually love sandwiches, heh :D

  2. "The most satisfying foie we've had in Malaysia in recent years" this make me want to try that foie gras! Hehehe.

    1. CK: ya, the foie here is very nice! it reminds me of the foie that used to be served at kl's restaurants more than 10 years ago :D

  3. You've certainly caught my attention with the foie, rib-eye & what-I-thought-was chicken liver at first (until you mentioned it was gizzard)...No-o-o! ^_~

    1. Contact.ewew: heheh, I usually don't like gizzard very much (I'd choose liver any time too), but the preparation here was really tasty - I could have eaten the entire plate ;)

  4. You just shared very nice dishes and I always salute all the chefs who took great pains to serve us in nice presentations like this. I am sure their food is always delicious to look & eat to deserve my big tips.

    1. Twilight Man: yeah, the chef and his team here are really top-notch ;) oops, I must admit I'm not a heavy tipper ... but I do try to acknowledge great service ;)